Sprenkle Advances, Salminen Eliminated at NCAA Championships

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – North Dakota State sophomore Trent Sprenkle defeated Garrett Frey of Princeton to advance to the second round in the consolation bracket at the NCAA Division I Championships on Thursday, March 17.

Sprenkle pinned Frey 2 minutes and 48 seconds into the first period. The Billings, Mont. native tallied an early takedown before notching the win. Sprenkle will now face off against Steven Keith of Harvard, who lost to top seeded Anthony Robles of Arizona State in a 15-0 technical fall. That match will take place during the Friday morning session that begins at 9:30 a.m. Live stats are available here.

In the first round of the consolation bracket at 157 pounds, senior Vince Salminen was eliminated from the tournament after losing a 17-3 major decision to Frank Hickman of Bloomsburg. Hickman had a strong first period, outscoring Salminen 10-3. He then held Salminen scoreless over the final two periods.

Gophers Kick Off NCAA Championships

All-Americans Zach Sanders and Mike Thorn each posted 2-0 records in the opening day of competition to advance to the quarterfinals as theMinnesota wrestling team currently sits in ninth place at the 2011 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships. Five other Gophers remain active in the consolation brackets.

Sanders opened the day for Minnesota with a 6-2 decision over Jason Lara of Oregon State in the 125 lbs. opening round. Sanders, who beat Lara in last year’s NCAA wrestlebacks in route to All-American honors, controlled the majority of the match and tallied nearly five minutes of riding time in the win. The Minnesota redshirt junior scored an 8-6 win over Virginia Tech’s Jarrod Garnett in the second round to reach the quarterfinals on Friday morning. Sanders will take on Ben Kjar of Utah Valley in the quarterfinals. Sanders defeated Kjar with a 2-0 decision earlier this year.

Thorn, seeded second in the 141 lbs. bracket, opened this year’s tournament with a pair of wins over ACC opponents. The redshirt senior, seeking his first individual national championship, bested North Carolina State’s Darius Little with a 2-1 decision to open the championships before topping Nick Nelson of Virginia 6-1 to reach the semifinals. Thorn will take on Todd Schavrien of Missouri tomorrow morning in the quarterfinals.

Five other members of the Gophers squad went 1-1 in the first day of action and remain in the hunt to place. David Thorn scored a 6-4 sudden victory win over Jordan Thome of Army to pick up the win in his first NCAA championship win. The redshirt freshman would drop his second-round match, also a sudden victory bout, this time in a 7-5 contest to Penn State’s Andrew Long. At 165, Cody Yohn lost his opening match to Columbia’s Eren Civan via fall at 2:28 but rallied back in his wrestleback to pin Chad Porter of Liberty at 1:40.

At 174 lbs., Scott Glasser opened the day with a 10-3 decision over Patrick Martinez of Wyoming but dropped his follow-up match to second-seed Ed Ruth of Penn State via 5-3 decision. 184-pounder Kevin Steinhaus also opened with a win, a 5-2 decision over Jason McCroskey of Chattanooga, but dropped his second-round matchup to Quentin Wright of Penn State via 8-4 decision in a rematch of the Big Ten finals. Sonny Yohn also went 1-1 at 197 lbs., beating Anthony Biondo of Michigan 6-1 but losing the follow up to Indiana’s Matt Powless in a 5-3 sudden victory bout. Heavyweight Tony Nelson started his NCAA career with a 3-1 sudden victory win over Christian Brantley of Northern Iowa, but fell to Cameron Wade of Penn State 4-1 in the second round. Danny Zilverberg was the only Gopher to be knocked out of contention, losing two matches to end his first-career NCAA appearance.

Gophers Open Strong at NCAA Championships

PHILADELPHIA — The Minnesota wrestling team opened the 2011 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships with seven wins in the opening session of action, keeping the Gophers in the hunt for the team’s fourth national championship in school history. Zach Sanders, David Thorn, Mike Thorn, Scott Glasser, Kevin Steinhaus, Sonny Yohn and Tony Nelson all picked up wins in the opening session for Minnesota.

Zach Sanders opened the NCAA championships for Minnesota with a 6-2 win over Jason Lara of Oregon State. Sanders, who beat Lara in last year’s NCAA wrestlebacks in route to All-American honors, controlled the majority of the match and tallied nearly five minutes of riding time in the win. Sanders will take on Jarrod Garnett of Virginia Tech tonight in the second round.

David Thorn advanced in dramatic fashion with a 6-4 SV win in his first-career NCAA championships match. Down 3-2 in the third period, Thorn scored a reversal that forced overtime after an escape by Army’s Jordan Thome. Thome struck first in the extra session with a single leg, but Thorn snuck out of the move and worked his way behind his opponent to gain control and pick up the win to advance. Thorn will take on Penn State’s Andrew Long in the second round tonight.

Mike Thorn gave the Gophers their third-straight win to open the morning session when he scored a 2-1 decision over Darius Little of NCSU. Thorn will take on Nick Nelson of Virginia tonight in the quarterfinals.

At 149 lbs., Danny Zilverberg dropped his opening match to No. 5 Jamal Parks of Oklahoma State via 6-3 decision. Zilverberg will take on 12 seed Desi Green of Buffalo in the 149 lbs. wrestlebacks. Cody Yohn dropped his opening match to No. 19 Eren Civan of Columbia. Civan scored with an early takedown and caught Yohn in a cradle to score a pin at 2:28. Yoh

Minnesota closed out the opening session with four-straight wins though to rebound from the early losses in the middleweights.  Scott Glasser and Kevin Steinhaus both tallied wins just minutes apart to advance to the quarterfinals in the 174 and 184 lbs. brackets, respectively. Glasser earned a 10-3 decision over Wyoming’s Patrick Martinez  in his first match of the day while Steinhaus opened his first NCAA championship appearance with a 5-2 win over Jason McCroskey of Chattanooga. Glasser will take on two-seed Ed Ruth of Penn State in the quarterfinals while Steinhaus draws Penn State’s Quentin Wright in a rematch of the Big Ten finals.

Sonny Yohn and Tony Nelson then followed suit with two more close wins in the 197 and 285 lbs. brackets, respectively. Yohn picked up a 6-1 decision over Michigan’s Anthony Biondo to advance while Nelson tallied a 3-1 SV win over Northern Iowa’s Christian Brantley. Yohn will take on Indiana’s Matt Powless.  Meanwhile, Nelson draws nine-seed Cameron Wade from Penn State in a rematch of the Big Ten semifinals.

The 2011 NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships in Philadelphia continue this evening with Session II at 6:30 local time. Continue checking Gophersports.com for updates.

Sprenkle, Salminen Falter in Opening Round at NCAA Championships

PHILADELPHIA, Pa. – North Dakota State senior Vince Salminen and sophomore Trent Sprenkle both dropped their opening bouts at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships on Thursday, March 17.  Both wrestlers now move into the consolation bracket in the double elimination tournament.

At 125 pounds, Sprenkle will next wrestle Princeton’s Garrett Frey, who lost a 16-5 major decision to Kent State’s Nicolas Bedelyon.  Salminen will face off against Frank Hickman of Bloomsburg, who lost an 11-7 decision to Derek St. John of Iowa in the 157 pound consolation bracket.  The action is scheduled to begin at 5:30 p.m. Central.  Live stats are available at http://www.nwcaonline.com/nwcaonline/CompetitionResultNCAA.aspx. Live video coverage of the championships is available at ESPN3.com.

In the opening round, Sprenkle matched up against 11th seeded Frank Perrelli of Cornell.  After a scoreless first period, Sprenkle got on the board first with a second period escape.  Perrelli tied the match with an escape early in the third period, but Sprenkle responded with a takedown to take a 3-1 lead.  Perrelli came back to score an escape with 55 seconds remaining and then tallied the match-winning takedown with 48 seconds remaining in the third  period.

Salminen took on 11th seeded Walter Peppelman of Harvard in the first round at 157 pounds.  Peppelman scored an early takedown and then was able to pin Salminen 32 seconds into the first period.